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Thread: New system build help !

  1. #1
    MurphmanL
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    New system build help !

    Hi all

    its been a long time since i last posted on here so its good to be back :-)

    About 10 months ago I bought a Ati Radeon 4870X2 but was unable to get the card to POST in my current machine. I got it on hte cheap so I thought the card was naff as it kept giving me three red lights.

    I never got around to testing it in anyone elses machine, so I assumed my old 600w jeantec psu was giving up so I decided to upgrade that to a more potent 750w psu.

    Unfortuantely it still would not boot so I finally got around to testing it in a mates amd based rig and low and behld the card is perfectly fine - it is infact some sort of weird compatibility issue im having with my ancient asus motherboard :-(

    Ive tried everything from resetting the CMOS to removing components, rewiring, etc - all to no avail, yet if I slot the card into my mates rig it boots first time, everytime...

    Must be my mainboard then !

    So now I ask, what to do, do I just try to sell on the 4870x2 and get another card hoping it will work, or do I rebuild, and if so, what to ?

    Budget would be £500 max(abit flexibile) , but all I would need are :

    > CPU
    > Mainboard
    > Ram (seems DDR3 is all the range now)

    I already have a potent gamers case (cosmos X) and adequate psu / cooling (psu is brand new)

    Any suggestions anyone ... corei7 , core i5 or Phenom?? ive been looking at various suppliers for barebones deals, such as yototech etc but tbh im frankly baffled !!

    Im coming from a

    Intel Q9550 @ stock
    8gb ram
    9800 gt (before that went)

    Many thanks for any advice :-)

  2. #2
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    • CAT-THE-FIFTH's system
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    Re: New system build help !

    What model is your PSU BTW??

    What model is your motherboard??

    A Q9550 with 8GB of RAM is fine for most games so I would probably keep this unless you can get a good price for it now. It maybe worth updating your motherboard BIOS or changing it to a more stable version.

    I would probably get a new P43 or P45 based motherboard if the old one you have is having problems:

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/170167

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/174244

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/179081

    http://www.ebuyer.com/product/145748

    If you still want to upgrade your CPU I would wait until Intel Sandy Bridge is released in the next few months or even until AMD Bulldozer which is being released next year.

    The HD4870X2 is still a fast graphics card although it does need a decent PSU to power it.

    For a new graphics card I would look at a GTX460 1GB or the faster HD5850 1GB. However,AMD Southern Islands is rumoured to be released in November.


    Those despicable Elk,stealing the pond weed!

  3. #3
    MurphmanL
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    Re: New system build help !

    I updated to the latest bios about a month ago , booted off a mates 9800 gtx and upgraded, still no avail :-(

    Ive tried absolutely everything to get this 4870x2 to boot but meh !!

    Im not still entirely over confident at building from scratch , so Ill end up if I do rebuild getting a pre-built motherboard combo bundle..

    I just dont know whether to continue to invest money in this older tech or whether to upgrade.

    AMD seems cheaper, but I dont know what the performance hit is incomparison to I7.

    A mate of mine just boght a new mesh system for £800 based on a core i5 650 i believe with a 5770 which seems alright, but I kind of wanted to just go for the best available tbh !

    **Edit** PSU now is a 750W High Power PSU, ATI Crossfire and SLI certified, Modular

  4. #4
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    • CAT-THE-FIFTH's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Less E-PEEN
      • CPU:
      • Massive E-PEEN
      • Memory:
      • RGB E-PEEN
      • Storage:
      • Not in any order
      • Graphics card(s):
      • EVEN BIGGER E-PEEN
      • PSU:
      • OVERSIZED
      • Case:
      • UNDERSIZED
      • Operating System:
      • DOS 6.22
      • Monitor(s):
      • NOT USUALLY ON....WHEN I POST
      • Internet:
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    Re: New system build help !

    What is the manufacturer of the PSU?? If it is an el-cheapo PSU it could be the source of your problem. In many cases they cannot even supply anywhere near their rated power and the HD4870X2 a decent high quality PSU.

    Stick with the Q9550 as for most games it is not worth the cost IMHO.


    Those despicable Elk,stealing the pond weed!

  5. #5
    MurphmanL
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    Re: New system build help !

    It is "High Power"

    http://www.pcworld.co.uk/gbuk/highpo...31655-pdt.html

    As far as I can tell it is a pretty rock solid psu, it was able to power my mates 4890x2 AMD phenom x4 rig through a crysis session, and the same rig with the 4870x2 interchanged, and it didnt seem to be straining it at all, was deadly quiet.

    Which is why I can fairly safely rule out the PSU being the issue , Im almost 100% its the mainboard having some weird compatibility issue with the card :-/

  6. #6
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    • CAT-THE-FIFTH's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Less E-PEEN
      • CPU:
      • Massive E-PEEN
      • Memory:
      • RGB E-PEEN
      • Storage:
      • Not in any order
      • Graphics card(s):
      • EVEN BIGGER E-PEEN
      • PSU:
      • OVERSIZED
      • Case:
      • UNDERSIZED
      • Operating System:
      • DOS 6.22
      • Monitor(s):
      • NOT USUALLY ON....WHEN I POST
      • Internet:
      • FUNCTIONAL

    Re: New system build help !

    I have never heard of Highpower before. Anyway it maybe worth using a multimeter to check the voltages on the lines when the computer is booting up to check everything is fine.

    What model is your motherboard?? Flashing the BIOS to a different version may help.

    If this does not help I would get a new motherboard as the rest of your computer is still quite decent IMHO.


    Those despicable Elk,stealing the pond weed!

  7. #7
    MurphmanL
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    Re: New system build help !

    Sorry, seems im stringing the thread along with piecemeal information:

    Mobo : Asus P5n-d
    PSU: High Power Ultra 750w 80+
    Ram 8gb Corsair
    HDD : 2x 500gb Hitachi 7200rpm sata
    Gfx : Sapphire 4870x2 2gb
    Case : Coolermaster Cosmos S (stock full of fans/ airflow)

    Hope this helps, was thinking of just a mainboard bundle and slapping it into the coolermaster case and keep building fro there !

  8. #8
    Pre-Cambrian nibbler's Avatar
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    Re: New system build help !

    I blame the PSU. Well I don't but get a new one and a new motherboard. Imo.
    Join the HEXUS Folding@home Team!!


  9. #9
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    • CAT-THE-FIFTH's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Less E-PEEN
      • CPU:
      • Massive E-PEEN
      • Memory:
      • RGB E-PEEN
      • Storage:
      • Not in any order
      • Graphics card(s):
      • EVEN BIGGER E-PEEN
      • PSU:
      • OVERSIZED
      • Case:
      • UNDERSIZED
      • Operating System:
      • DOS 6.22
      • Monitor(s):
      • NOT USUALLY ON....WHEN I POST
      • Internet:
      • FUNCTIONAL

    Re: New system build help !

    Looks like the motherboard uses an Nvidia chipset. IIRC,some of the chipsets were quite buggy. Like I said before check the PSU voltages during boot-up to see if they look fine.

    If you are not confident in installing your CPU just pay a PC shop to install it for you. However socket 775 CPUs are not that hard to install as long as you are careful.


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  10. #10
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    Re: New system build help !

    That's a lot of money for a PSU from an unkown brand For £90 you could have gone the Corsair or Be Quiet route. That being said it should probably be OK since it's not a £22 1500W jobbie. I'd have to agree with Cat and go with a new mobo, although it would be strange if you had all of that high end equipment and plugged it into a sub par mobo. A model number would be ideal.

  11. #11
    MurphmanL
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    Re: New system build help !

    Thanks for all the replies so far.

    I didnt pay the listed price for the highpower as I work for DSG got it for just shy of £70

    I was under the impression the Q9xx are out of date now because of the new Core I series so I was thinking of switching to the Phenoms as I should be able to go Phenom X6 route well within a £400ish budget I guess... perhaps not so much core i7...

    The motherboad is Asus P5N-D as stated, and upon looking around the net others with that board seem to have 4870x2's either working or playing up with it :-/

    Tempted to just rebuild the core components on a budget tbh as the systems about 3 year old build now iirc..

  12. #12
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    • CAT-THE-FIFTH's system
      • Motherboard:
      • Less E-PEEN
      • CPU:
      • Massive E-PEEN
      • Memory:
      • RGB E-PEEN
      • Storage:
      • Not in any order
      • Graphics card(s):
      • EVEN BIGGER E-PEEN
      • PSU:
      • OVERSIZED
      • Case:
      • UNDERSIZED
      • Operating System:
      • DOS 6.22
      • Monitor(s):
      • NOT USUALLY ON....WHEN I POST
      • Internet:
      • FUNCTIONAL

    Re: New system build help !

    I would try flashing the BIOS to see if it solves the problem. Even if the problem persists spending £60 to £80 on a new motherboard would mean you can save quite a bit of money. However,like I said before check how much you can get for your existing components to see if it is worth your while go for a new CPU,motherboard,RAM and graphics card.


    Those despicable Elk,stealing the pond weed!

  13. #13
    Not a good person scaryjim's Avatar
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    Re: New system build help !

    A Q9550 is roughly performance equivalent to a Phenom II X4 945 / 955, so it's not out of date by any means. You'd be looking at Core i7 9x0 as the only serious upgrade from there - the i5 750 and top end Phenoms would be more of a sideways step and provide little improvement. Even then you'll only see big improvements from an i7 in heavily multithreaded tasks, which gaming tends not to be.

    If I were you I'd keep persevering with the p5n-d for a while yet - try some different BIOSes: if the most recent one doesn't work then go for one or two before that. I'd also see if you can borrow a PSU from a reputable manufacturer - if the 4870 X2 works in a mates machine why not ask if you can borrow his PSU to test it in yours?

    You also say it kept giving you "three red lights" - three red lights where? If there's an LED diagnostics can you not find out what the specific problem is?

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    Re: New system build help !

    scaryjim is correct, a Q9550 is still a very capable chip and anything other than upgrading to an i7 9xx would be a waste of time. Even if you're thinking of doing that it might be worth waiting for the impending sandy bridge architecture (and yet another socket change )

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    • PC4Free's system
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    Re: New system build help !

    If you are looking to buy a new motherboard the Asus P6X58D is arguably the best bang for buck socket 1366.

    Then you'll want the i7 920 or 930 for the processor.

    As for RAM good old Corsair XMS3 DDR3 is probably the best bet

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    Re: New system build help !

    How about Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R Rev.2 or Asus P6X58D-E... Reviews of both can be found at bit-tech.net

    Scan sells both of the models for £149.42 (last time I checked).

    Also instead of going for the i7 930 you can get the i7 950 for an extra 20 quid or so (IMO).

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